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In efforts to get guns off the streets and out of the hands of New Yorkers, a popular small business is hosting a buy back.

On Sunday, May 21, Junior’s Restaurant, will sponsor a gun buyback in partnership with the New York Police Department, New York City Police Foundation and Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office in Effort to Curb Gun Violence in City.

Watching ceaseless gun violence on the news moved Junior’s third-generation owner, Alan Rosen, to action. A few weeks back, when a story aired about a 12-year-old boy fatally shot while sitting in a relative’s parked car in Brooklyn, Rosen realized he had to do what he could to prevent more gun-related violence.

“That was the tipping point for me,” said Rosen. “Enough is enough. We have to do something and do it now!” He made a few calls to elected officials, the local police precinct and others, asking what he could do to help mitigate the increasing gun violence in Brooklyn.

The result: The septuagenarian Junior’s Restaurant, which is known for its New York Cheesecake, is co-sponsoring a gun buyback next Saturday, May 21, from 10 am to 4 pm, at Emmanuel Baptist Church, 279 Lafayette St., in Brooklyn.

The event offers an opportunity for individuals to exchange handguns, assault rifles, shotguns, and airguns for monetary compensation, as well as an iPad. Those turning in an assault rifle and/or handguns will receive a $200 bank card and an iPad, while those turning in rifles, shotguns and/or air guns will receive a $25 bank card. Rosen told Crain’s New York he expects to spend up to $20,000 of his own money to buy weapons traded in at the event. No questions are asked about the origins or legality of the guns traded in, the goal is just to safely remove them from citizen’s possession.

“As a father, businessman, and owner of restaurants that have been woven into the very fabric of New York for more than 70 years, I want to do everything I can to keep my borough, my city, my restaurants and my fellow New Yorkers safe,” said Rosen. “So when I saw the story about the innocent boy being killed by a hail of bullets while he was just sitting and eating a snack in his aunt’s car, I knew I needed to do something. The rise in gun violence is a terrible threat to the lives of our families and neighbors. If this gun buyback results in even one less act of criminal gun activity, if it just saves the life of one other innocent boy or girl, it is worth it. Of course, we’re hoping that hundreds of individuals will participate by turning in their guns so we can really make a major dent in the problem.”

Gun buyback programs have become popular with private businesses in partnership with the public sector. Congress’s Safer Neighborhood Gun Buyback Act, introduced as a bill on May 21, 2021, has yet to move through to a house and senate vote.

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